It’s daughter of one leader against son of another leader in Nizamabad. She is none other than daughter of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao. K. Kavitha faces a challenge from D. Aravind of BJP in retaining Nizamabad Lok Sabha seat. Aravind is son of D. Srinivas, a leader of ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS).
Srinivas appears to be caught between the loyalty to the party and the love for his son. Kavitha has accused Srinivas of working against the party by promoting his son while Srinivas swears that he is not the one who indulges in anti-party activities.
At a time when TRS appears set to face early polls and it continues to attract leaders from Congress and other opposition parties, the issue of D. Srinivas could deal a blow to the ruling party.
The former chief of Congress in undivided Andhra Pradesh was one of the many top leaders who switched loyalties after the TRS formed first government in the newly created state in 2014. KCR rewarded him with the post of special advisor to the government and made him Rajya Sabha member in 2016.
Srinivas had led the Congress party to victory in 2004 and 2009 Assembly elections in then united Andhra Pradesh. In 2014, he lost the elections. His entry into TRS further strengthened the party in Nizamabad, which Kavitha represents in Lok Sabha.
Reports of Srinivas’ son Aravind planning to join BJP have been doing rounds for several months but the indications of early polls and latest speculations of Arvind planning to contest from Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency in the coming elections have what upset the TRS chief’s daughter. She and several other TRS leaders from the district last week started demanding KCR to crack the whip on Srinivas for anti-party activities. They alleged that Srinivas was working against the party by promoting his son Arvind. They also alleged that Srinivas, along with his elder son, wanted to rejoin the Congress and was in touch with Congress leaders in Delhi.
Kavitha and her supporters urged KCR to take disciplinary action against Srinivas. They accused him of ‘not shedding his old habits like indulging in anti-party activities and corrupt practices, and encouraging groupism.’
They alleged that Srinivas is trying to weaken the TRS in Nizamabad only to promote his son. Seeking early action against him, they said his continuance would harm the party.
Following this letter by Kavitha and her supporters, Srinivas rushed to Hyderabad to meet KCR. He told media that he was informed that the CM wants to meet him but when he went to meet him, he did not get the appointment.
Upset over the allegations made by TRS leaders, the former PCC chief said that he is not a person who resorts to anti-party activities.
TRS sources say KCR may show the door to Srinivas, who tried to defend himself by saying that he did his best to stop his son from joining BJP but failed. He claims that he has done nothing against TRS.
Srinivas said he could not force his son as this could have led to split in the family. On the other hand his son launched a counter attack on Kavitha saying she made the allegations against his father out of fear of losing the election.
Aravind, who is a member of state executive committee of BJP, said joining BJP was his own decision. He said those who have no political knowledge were saying that he joined the BJP at the behest of his father.
Whatever it may be, KCR is under pressure to crack the whip for the sake of his daughter. This is the first time that the TRS chief is facing a problem of this nature. While many senior leaders from other parties joined TRS during last four years, the TRS never faced an embarrassing situation.
In politics, there are several instances of two members of a same family working for two different political parties. KCR is in a dilemma, If he takes any action against Srinivas, he may be accused of stretching things too far for the sake of his daughter. On the other hand, Kavitha wants the action to send a strong message to those resorting to anti-party activities. Her supporters also feel that if no action is taken against Srinivas, this may embolden him and this could ultimately mar Kavitha’s prospects.